From Stations to Slopes: The History of Amtrak Ski Trains

Retro Amtrak Ski PosterOur Winter Ski Getaway is in its final days, so we’re using this Throwback Thursday to hit the slopes!

Long before we tracked a group of brave free skiers through Montana, Amtrak made a business of delivering customers to some of the best ski terrain in the country. Few people know, however, that it all started in 1936 in the Sawtooth Mountains near Ketchum, Idaho, thanks to a former chairman of the Union Pacific Railroad. He spotted an opportunity and opened his own resort!

Learn more about Amtrak ski trains at hisotry.amtrak.com.

Today our trains still bring customers to some of the best slopes in the country, including Whitefish, Mont., for skiing at Big Mountain and to Denver and Glenwood Springs for easy access to Copper Mountain, Breckenridge, Aspen, Snowmass, Sunlight Mountain and Powderhorn.

Back in the 1970s, one of the first routes we heavily promoted was the Montrealer (northbound)/Washingtonian (southbound) between Washington and Montreal. Although it passed through Vermont in the late evening and early morning, the train stopped at towns like White River Junction, Montpelier and St. Albans that were close to major ski centers.

For winter weather enthusiasts, Amtrak can still get you to some of the nation’s coolest (get it?) destinations. But if you’re looking to save 20 percent, book our Empire Builder to Whitefish by April 8!

To learn more about the history of Amtrak's Ski Trains, visit history.amtrak.com.

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